Adobe Warns Of Critical Shockwave Player Flaw

Adobe has warned of a serious security bug affecting Shockwave Player on Windows and Mac OS X

Adobe Systems is warning users about a critical bug in Shockwave Player that impacts both Macintosh and Windows computers.

Adobe issued an advisory about the bug on 21 October. According to Adobe, the vulnerability exists in Shockwave Player and earlier, and could be exploited to “cause a crash and potentially allow an attacker to take control of the affected system”.

At the moment, Adobe said it is “not aware of any attacks” exploiting the bug, though “details about the vulnerability have been disclosed publicly”.

Patch on the way

A Secunia advisory about the Shockwave vulnerability said it is caused by “an array-indexing error in the handling of a certain record value in a ‘rcsL’ chunk and can be exploited to use an arbitrary dword in memory as a function pointer via a specially crafted Director file”.

Secunia advised Shockwave Player users to avoid untrusted websites, while Adobe recommended that users ensure that their machines are fully patched.

“We are currently working on determining the schedule for an update to address this vulnerability in Adobe Shockwave Player,” Adobe’s advisory said. “As always, Adobe recommends that users follow security best practices by keeping their anti-malware software and definitions up-to-date.”

In part because of their ubiquity, Adobe products have become a major target for attackers in recent years. To improve security, Adobe is introducing sandboxing technology into Adobe Reader for Windows. The update is scheduled to come in the next few weeks.